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The National Party in Victoria has consistently betrayed their electorates they represent by flagrantly aligning themselves with Liberal Party policies to close rail lines across Victoria.
Peter Walsh was in the Kennett Government and did nothing to prevent the closure and sell off freight rolling stock and the privatisation of country rail lines, that were then run into the ground by private rail operators like Pacific National.
Peter Walsh's lack of action and courage to stand up for country people has resulted in the country rail network being degraded to such an extent, that it has been in places unsafe to operate, excessive speed restrictions imposed because of the deterioration of the condition of the tracks.
Peter Walsh was there when the Kennett Government moved 6.3 million tonnes of rail freight and he may as well carried the silver platter that served the 6.3 million tonnes of rail freight up to the Road Freight Transport Industry and brought about the closure of V/Line Freight.
Peter Walsh and the Nationals have been directly responsible for the sabotaging of country town economies with the closure of rail lines that have excluded residents of the towns from accessing reliable, effective and punctual public transport.
Buses just do not cut it or replace the impact that a passenger rail service has on a town and a region.
The Nationals have through their complicity with the Liberal Party, have reduced business opportunities, mobility of residents for employment, overseen the contraction of town and regional populations through the removal of rail services and this has lead to the contraction of services in the towns and regions, including access to medical and health services and the decimation of real estate values in towns.
One of the most impoverished regions in Victoria is in a Nationals electorate and it has lost its passenger rail service and the region has lost its identity as a tourist destination.
The region struggles with poverty and low employment and is impossible to attract business and the decline has been hastened with the loss of services, causing residents to travel further for them or to go without because of a lack access of regular public transport.
The evidence is there with Clunes, Talbot, Creswick and Maryborough, that when a rail service returns to a town it kick starts the towns economy and the towns become a place for destination and attracts new residents and businesses.
The rail services to these towns were not initiated by the politicians that represented the electorate, but from the grit and determination of these towns residents and the politicians just went along for the free media ride.
Public Relations Manager
Rail Revival Alliance Victoria
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